American Univesity of Beirut

GDT – a service-learning course starting at FAFS


The Global Design Teams Capstone Course (FAFS 297) was launched this spring semester in collaboration with Texas A&M University, Purdue University and three universities from Australia, Sweden and Spain.

This course provides the students with experiential service learning through community building. It offers enriched academic experience, engagement between students and faculty and meaningful hands-on community service. The projects this year are related to developing a sustainable low-energy/low cost fruit dryer that may be used by small producers; another project is a humanitarian/service intervention on public spaces aiming at supporting BourjHammoud community post-Beirut blast. Students from FAFS are teaming up with students from other universities under the supervision of Dr. Ammar Olabi, Dr. Mohamad Abiad and Dr. Maria Gabriella Trovato from FAFS to develop and test well-thought designs and solutions.

The GDT Capstone course provides an opportunity for FAFS and our students to partner with local communities and/or private sector and engage in service learning while trying to solve a real-life challenge. This course perfectly fits under the new proposed General Education (GE) curriculum that is being proposed that aims at including community engagement and service learning for all students. ​


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